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baby – Frugal & Simple http://frugalandsimple.com living a green, minimal & sustainable life Fri, 30 Jan 2015 19:10:26 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.8.2 Baby Weston http://frugalandsimple.com/2012/03/14/baby-weston/ http://frugalandsimple.com/2012/03/14/baby-weston/#comments Wed, 14 Mar 2012 12:00:07 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=8567

Sweet baby Weston enjoying being outside on a warm and beautiful day!

Linked to: Wordless Wednesday

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Pregnancy from the Eyes of a Single Mama http://frugalandsimple.com/2012/01/24/pregnancy-from-the-eyes-of-a-single-mama/ http://frugalandsimple.com/2012/01/24/pregnancy-from-the-eyes-of-a-single-mama/#comments Tue, 24 Jan 2012 15:51:01 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=7481 This post was written by my sister, Rebekah. It was originally published in August 2010. Since Sanctity of Human Life Sunday was this 2 days ago, I thought this was fitting to share! It’s a beautiful story of God’s forgiveness, grace and love. Not every woman is thrilled to learn it’s positive when they take a pregnancy test but each one of those babies are blessings!

Rebekah and 3-day-old Emerson

I was 19 when I found out I was pregnant.  I had just started my sophomore year in college and it was a nightmare.  Not only was I pregnant, but I was not in a relationship with the baby’s father; this was not exactly an ideal situation.  I was so scared about what my parents and friends would think and say.  I think I was even more nervous about going to church pregnant and unmarried.  I told my parents and they were pretty supportive, upset of course, but supportive.  My mother and I did get into a few arguments and she said some things that really hurt my feelings, but I know she was just as upset about everything as I was.

So many people that I talked to acted like it was no problem at all.  “You can take care of it” or “just get it fixed” were common remarks and an abortion seemed to be a simple “solution” to the problem.  Even though my parents already knew I was pregnant it would be so easy for me to just tell them I had a miscarriage.  But I couldn’t do it.  I had never even considered having an abortion if I got in this situation and now that I was in it an abortion was certainly not an option for me.  I knew things would be hard and some people would think badly of me, but I had made the decision to have sex and this baby was not something I could just get rid of like it never existed.

Each month was difficult for me.  Often I felt like no one cared and that I was a loser and a screw up.  I kept wishing that things would go back to normal, but I knew that realistically this was my life.  I was going to be a single mom and I needed to prepare for it whether I wanted to or not.  During my pregnancy my relationship with the Lord actually improved.  I had been a Christian for several years, although I had made poor decisions on many occasions, but I felt like I was closer to the Lord than ever.  Even though I was in a bad situation I knew that everything would be ok and towards the end of my pregnancy I was actually happier than I had been in a long time.

Emerson Alexandria was born on Wednesday, June 17, 2009 at 9:54 am.  I couldn’t believe that this little bundle was actually my daughter.  It took a few months for me to realize that I was a mommy and the “unconditional love” didn’t set in for a couple months either.  I felt like something was wrong with me and that I wasn’t going to be a good mom.  After a while, however, I continued to fall more and more in love with my little girl.

Today I don’t know what I would do without her.  I love holding her in my arms and my favorite thing to do now is take naps with her lying on my tummy.  She has made me become a better person and has made me realize that I need to enjoy life and what I have and not take things for granted.  Although my situation is certainly not ideal and what God intended, I know that this happened for a reason.  I am so glad I made the decision to keep my baby and not “fix the problem” like I was encouraged to do.  Babies are not choices, they are a life.  We should not have the decision to terminate a life that God has created.  All people are “fearfully and wonderfully made,” and seeing how every person starts off as a baby, this applies to them also.  Emerson is the best thing that has ever happened to me and I know that every other baby can bring just as much joy as she has.

Celebrating Emerson’s First Birthday!


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Weston’s Birth Story http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/12/27/westons-birth-story/ http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/12/27/westons-birth-story/#comments Tue, 27 Dec 2011 21:24:45 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=7399

Weston is definitely our surprise baby! With Paxton, everything was planned, we were trying when we got pregnant with him and he was induced according to our plan. With Weston, from the beginning he’s been a surprise! We weren’t planning on getting pregnant with him {although we were thrilled when we found out} and his entrance into the world was quite a surprise too!

I was due December 31 but hoping I’d be a day or two overdue so he’d be born in 2012 {Paxton was born in 2010 and I liked the thought of even birth years!} I just knew since he was my second baby that I’d be miserable around 32 weeks to the end of the pregnancy but I was wrong! I felt fabulous throughout the entire pregnancy, I had quite a bit of energy and I was still able to do everything as normal with Paxton {including putting a sleeping 20-month-old into his crib at 38 weeks pregnant!}

Since Paxton’s birth was so fast for a first time birth {5 hours from the time they broke my water and started pitocin until the time he was born}, I was convinced that my second baby would come quickly and one of my fears throughout this pregnancy was not making it to the hospital on time!

On Tuesday, December 20, I was 38 weeks 3 days pregnant and I had quite the day! I cleaned our home thoroughly, did some pre-Christmas de-cluttering and a lot of laundry! By the end of the day I was tired from all of the ‘nesting’. That night when I laid down to go to sleep, I felt what could best be described as a burrowing sensation. I could feel his little head moving further down. I had never felt anything like that with Paxton! I didn’t sleep very well that night and then Paxton woke up around 2 am and he slept the rest of the night with us. I had trouble sleeping, I kept tossing and turning and just couldn’t get comfortable.

Wednesday morning I woke up feeling really good especially considering the rough night I’d had. I did decide to take the day easy though since I didn’t want to do anything that could put me into labor, especially since John David was working late that night. Paxton and I stayed in our jammies well into the morning. I updated our finances, scheduling our mortgage payment so we wouldn’t have to worry about that on January 1! The day was pretty typical except for John David being gone all evening. I put Paxton down around 8:00 and I was feeling tired too so I decided to go ahead and get in bed after starting a load of diaper laundry.

I stayed up waiting for John David to get home and he finally arrived around 10. We stayed up talking and playing Words with Friends until 11:30. Once again I felt the burrowing sensation when I laid down. I was having an occasional contraction but they were typical Braxton-Hicks. I went to sleep fairly easily.

Between going to bed at 11:30 and 1:30, I woke up 2 or 3 times having a mild contraction. While I was having the contraction, I’d walk to the bathroom, pee and then walk back to bed and go back to sleep. They were slightly uncomfortable but nothing painful. After the contraction I had around 1:30 I was unable to get comfortable so I got out of bed, went to the bathroom again and then turned on my lamp.

I had another contraction at 1:40 and decided to start timing them since it was appearing that they were getting closer together. I had contractions at 1:40, 1:48, 1:54, 1:58 so they were very quickly getting closer together. I wasn’t incredibly uncomfortable as long as I was standing so I could sway my hips and move around with the contractions. I had a little bit of back labor with Paxton and these contractions were very similar, the contraction would start in my back and move around to my belly and my back hurt more than anything! I decided to run out to the laundry around 2 to run the final rinse on diapers and I came back in and my contractions were still 4 minutes apart.

I still wasn’t sure if I was really in labor or if it was false labor. I knew you were supposed to go to the hospital when contractions were 5 minutes apart but I really wasn’t in horrible, unbearable pain. Around 2:30, I woke up John David and started packing the hospital bags. I still wasn’t convinced I was in real labor even though the labor book we were referring to at this point indicated that I was in active labor. Finally, we decided it was labor and we needed to start really preparing to go to the hospital.

John David called my friend Ashley around 3:20 to see if she would come stay with Paxton. While we were waiting on Ashley, I was packing a bag for Paxton and gathering stuff for our bags while John David was loading the car. {I should add here that John David got the clean diapers out of the wash and hung them on the drying rack. I had been very concerned about leaving dirty diapers at home when I went into labor so this was a relief!}

Ashley arrived around 3:35 and we gave her a few instructions for Paxton and we left after I had a contraction while attempting to get into the car. At this point, contractions were 3-4 minutes apart and I had about 3 contractions which were so uncomfortable since I couldn’t move much. Riding in the car made the back labor even worse!

We arrived at the hospital around 3:30 and got a front row spot so I was able to walk in. We went into the registration room where I had 2 more contractions. After I was checked in, they sent us to a waiting area and I had 3 contractions which were very intense and I had the urge to push.

A nurse came out and we went to an admitting room where I changed into a gown through another contraction. I was checked and was dilated to 10 centimeters! I was wheeled into a delivery room while having contractions lying flat on my back which was so uncomfortable. At this point I also was fighting the urge to push.

We got into the delivery room and I was moved onto the bed. I was hooked up to a monitor at 3:58, had my blood drawn and an IV put in. At this point, I had an overwhelming urge to push and was begging to be allowed to push. The nurses kept telling me to just breathe through the contractions and not push because the midwife was not there yet. {I should add that this period of not being able to push was the worst part of the whole labor and delivery. My body was ready to do what it was supposed to do and trying not to was so hard!}

While waiting for the midwife to arrive, John David ran out to the car to grab our camera and while he was gone and as our midwife was arriving, I couldn’t fight the urge to push anymore. I pushed and my water broke. Then John David got back and the midwife was there and I was finally able to start pushing! It was such a relief to be able to push. It didn’t feel good nor was it easy but it was so wonderful to be able to do what my body needed to do.

I pushed about 4 or 5 times in a period of 5 minutes or less and Weston was born at 4:16 am! It was such a relief to feel him come out. I was so excited that I had delivered without any medication but a bit embarrassed at how loud I was while delivering him!

Weston weighed 6 pounds 14 ounces and was 20 inches long! {Paxton was 8 pounds 8 ounces, so he was considerably smaller!}

Unfortunately I did rip at the site of my old tear but thankfully it was only a second degree tear instead of a third degree which I had with Paxton. Finally, after stitches {which to me was almost worse than the delivery even though I had local anesthesia} I was able to hold him again and count his fingers and toes.

I unwrapped him for skin to skin and nursing, he latched on perfectly and started nursing right away, it was completely natural for both of us. It was amazing how much more confident I felt nursing him, I suppose 15 months of breastfeeding experience gives a mama confidence! After Weston finished nursing, we moved to our postpartum room around 6:30 am.

We’re still in disbelief that labor started at 1:30 and Weston was born at 4:16! That’s only 2 hours and 45 minutes of labor!

Around 2:30 that afternoon, John David went and got Paxton and brought him back to the hospital to meet his new brother and spend some time with us! He noticed Weston right when he walked in the room and was thrilled to see ‘baby’!

We’re adjusting well as a family of four. Paxton has not acted jealous of Weston and is taking his role as big brother quite seriously!

We feel so blessed that I had a quick and easy labor and delivery and we have another healthy and beautiful son!

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Weston Clark http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/12/25/weston-clark/ http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/12/25/weston-clark/#comments Mon, 26 Dec 2011 03:28:22 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=7394

Weston Clark Boreing

December 22, 2011 at 4:16 am

6 pounds 14 ounces, 20 inches long

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Planning to Cloth Diaper 2 Babies http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/11/28/planning-to-cloth-diaper-2-babies/ http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/11/28/planning-to-cloth-diaper-2-babies/#comments Mon, 28 Nov 2011 19:04:58 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=7198 When I was pregnant with Paxton, I spent hours researching cloth diapers. I knew I was going to cloth diaper but I had no clue about the details of it. I read everything I could on cloth diapering and decided to purchase a few diapers to try out on my niece. After using the 3 different types of diapers, I felt more confident about cloth diapering. I was given a few more diapers as gifts but decided to wait until after Paxton arrived to invest more into the diapers. This saved me a ton of money because the diapers I liked the best before he was born were the ones I liked the least once I was diapering him!

Now that I’ve been cloth diapering for 18 months, you’d think adding a new baby into the mix wouldn’t be a big deal and I’d be able to jump right in! However, I almost feel like I’m starting over completely since I have no idea what to expect with cloth diapering two!

About 2 months ago, I did a diaper inventory and we had 24 diapers total including pockets and prefolds which lasted 3 days. I wash every other day and having a full day’s supply when I wash which is nice, I never have to worry about running out and that gives my inserts plenty of time to line dry!

Since Paxton is going through about 8 diapers a day, we need to have at least 16 for him for every other day and Weston will probably need from 10-12 a day so that’s about 24 diapers we’ll need bringing the total up to 40! That sounds like a ton of diapers and if I was going to be washing every other day it would still not be enough to give the diapers time to dry. The fact that I’m currently washing just 16 diapers per load every other day means if I was to wash diapers every other day for 2 babies, I’d have about 40 diapers in the wash which I believe would be way too many. With that said, I believe my wash routine is going to be every day and a half! I should only be washing around 26-30 diapers at a time which I think will not be too large of a load to get everything clean.

So, if I wash 30 diapers every day and a half, I still will have 10 diapers left which is half a day’s diapers for the boys, giving my others time to line dry and if the inserts are not dry when I need them,  I can always throw them in the dryer.

Here’s my diaper stash as of today {after the purchase of new diapers} ::

{33 that both boys can wear since they’re one-size diapers, 2 that Paxton* wears overnight and 4 small diapers for Weston**}

With 39 diapers, I’m almost to that ‘magic’ {at least I think} number of 40! So, at this time we really only need 1 more diaper and any more than that will just give us some extra wiggle room!

Of course, this is my plan on this side of having 2 babies…we’ll have to see how it’s going in a few months!

{And we’ve been so blessed already with a gift certificate which we used to purchase more bumGeniusdiapers which are our favorite & money for diapers and a new larger diaper pail…which we’ve yet to find but we’re on the search for the ‘perfect’ one!}

This post contains affiliate links.

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Sweetbottoms Baby Sale http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/11/27/sweetbottoms-baby-sale/ http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/11/27/sweetbottoms-baby-sale/#comments Sun, 27 Nov 2011 19:41:54 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=7225

 

If you’re looking for a deal on cloth diapers this weekend or other ‘green’ gifts for your children or friends, check out Sweetbottoms Baby ! They’re offering 10% off a $30 or more purchase through Monday night when you use discount code ‘BLACKFRIDAY2011’!

 

Diapers on Sale*:

*GroVia: Buy 2, Get 1 FREE  (applies to AIO, Newborn AIO, Shells, & Bio Diapers)

*Rump-a-rooz Pocket Diapers: Buy 4+, Get 1 FREE; Buy 8+, Get 2 FREE; Buy 12+, Get 3 FREE; Buy 20+, Get 4 FREE

*Bottombumpers AIOs: Buy 6 solid or 4 prints, Get 1 FREE

*Econobum: Buy 1 Prefold/Cover Set, Get 1 FREE

{*If you purchase the sale diapers, the 10% off doesn’t apply.}

 

I took advantage of the discount code twice this weekend purchasing a few items for my boys and a few gifts!! 

{Note: I am a Sweetbottoms Baby Affiliate}

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Econobum Buy 1 Get 1 Free http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/11/01/econobum-buy-1-get-1-free/ http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/11/01/econobum-buy-1-get-1-free/#comments Tue, 01 Nov 2011 18:14:22 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=7103

 

During the Month of November, Econobum Single Packs are Buy 1, Get 1! The Single Packs are only $9.95!!

This is an awesome deal on an inexpensive cloth diapering system. Each pack comes with a cover and a pre-fold, so you’re getting 2 covers and 2 pre-folds for less than $10!!!

We have 2 Econobum covers and 5 pre-folds {you can purchase an additional 3-pack of pre-folds for $6!} and we use them all the time!

The 2 covers we have were purchased during the last Buy 1, Get 1 deal back in February and they’re holding up great, showing little to no wear after 9 months!  {I gave the first Econobum I bought before Paxton was born to my sister and it’s still in great condition!}

As for the pre-folds, I really love the Econobum pre-folds. They’re thick, absorbant and get softer with each use.

If you’re looking into cloth diapering but don’t want to make a huge investment, the Econobum system would be a great, inexpensive start!

And, if you order from Sweetbottoms Baby, all orders ship free!

 

{Note: I am a Sweetbottoms Baby Affiliate}

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This Busy Season http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/10/23/this-busy-season/ http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/10/23/this-busy-season/#comments Mon, 24 Oct 2011 01:36:59 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=7064 I’m sure you’ve noticed it’s been somewhat quite around here these past few weeks. Other than Our Financial Story and Cloth Diaper videos, there haven’t been any posts!

Honestly, this is a busy season in my life and unfortunately this blog has been neglected. Of course, my family always comes first so I think neglecting the blog for the sake of my family is just fine!

Somehow I’m already 30 weeks pregnant! This pregnancy is absolutely flying by and I suppose I’m in a bit of denial that in 10 weeks or so we’ll have another baby.

Hitting the 3rd trimester caused my energy level to decrease and I’ve been struggling a few weeks with this. I want to get things done, I feel like there is so much to do to prepare for this baby but I really just want to nap or sit and relax. Thankfully, I noticed a slight boost in my energy level over the past week! I’m hoping it stays a few weeks so I can get our home in order and feel somewhat organized before Weston arrives.

Another thing that has kept me busy, after realizing that two cribs, a dresser and a changing table were not going to fit in the nursery, I had the brilliant {or crazy} idea that we’d do some room swapping. So, after talking it over for a few weeks with John David, we decided that we’d move into the master bedroom that was formerly the office/guest room. We moved the nursery to our old room and the office/guest room to the former nursery. Basically we moved, just within our house. We did the major rearranging just last night and still lack some settling in, organizing and decorating but I’m looking forward to some of these little projects!

Of course Paxton has kept me incredibly busy too! He was 18 months last week and is so much fun. He’s learning so much and turning into such a little boy and he has quite the personality {and style…he loves shoes, especially his boots!} I’m savoring our days together, just the two of us since I know they’re numbered. I’m taking time to snuggle and play and give him my undivided attention since I know things will never be the same. This is definitely a bittersweet thought. Just last week he fell asleep while we were reading and I just held him {and then fell asleep myself!} He also has wanted to be rocked the past two nights before bed and I just savored every moment of it.

I’m hoping to share some of my organizing and baby preparations during the course of the next few weeks! Right now we’re planning on building some shelving in our closet, I’m going to be organizing the boys closet and dresser and hopefully figure out a good baby clothing storage system {right now all the newborn-18 month clothes are in one large tub that won’t fit in the closet!} I’m also trying to decide the right number of cloth diapers we need for two and the best diaper pail for us! And of course, some simplifying around our home since I’ve found that the less stuff we have, the easier our home is to maintain and keep clean.

Thank you for continuing to read even through the times when I’m not posting much! I’m so blessed to have such amazing readers!!

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Cloth Diapers: Flip http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/10/19/cloth-diapers-flip/ http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/10/19/cloth-diapers-flip/#comments Wed, 19 Oct 2011 18:11:01 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=6997

{Note: I am a Sweetbottoms Baby  Affiliate}

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Cloth Diapers: bumGenius 3.0 All-In-One http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/10/11/cloth-diapers-bumgenius-3-0-all-in-one/ Tue, 11 Oct 2011 13:35:36 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=6995

{Note: I am a Sweetbottoms Baby Affiliate}

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Cloth Diapers: Tots Bots Easy Fit http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/10/06/cloth-diapers-tots-bots-easy-fit/ Thu, 06 Oct 2011 22:21:18 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=6993

Disclosure: I was provided this Tots Bots Easy Fit Diaper but not compensated in any other way. All opinions are my own.

{Note: I am a Sweetbottoms Baby Affiliate}

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Cloth Diapers: Smartipants http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/09/29/cloth-diapers-smartipants/ Thu, 29 Sep 2011 19:36:20 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=6991

{Note: I am a Sweetbottoms Baby Affiliate}

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Cloth Diapers: Comfy Rumps http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/09/20/cloth-diapers-comfy-rumps/ http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/09/20/cloth-diapers-comfy-rumps/#comments Tue, 20 Sep 2011 13:11:21 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=6989

{Note: I am a Sweetbottoms Baby Affiliate}

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Cloth Diapers: bumGenius One-Size http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/09/15/cloth-diapers-bumgenius-one-size/ http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/09/15/cloth-diapers-bumgenius-one-size/#comments Thu, 15 Sep 2011 13:37:24 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=6987

{Note: I am a Sweetbottoms Baby Affiliate}

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Paxton’s Nursery http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/09/13/paxtons-nursery/ http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/09/13/paxtons-nursery/#comments Tue, 13 Sep 2011 12:00:08 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=6873

Now that we’re expecting and beginning to plan a nursery for two, I thought it was time to share Paxton’s nursery in our new home!

When we were expecting Paxton, we put together a nursery which was completely functional but lacked personalization and finishing touches. Then we moved to a rental and the nursery there was builder beige and we didn’t have a thing on the walls.

When we moved, I wanted to create a room for him that was personalized and a space he could grow up with, all on a small budget. We painted the walls a beautiful shade of green and added in touches of bright reds and blues with toys and decor. I adore primary colors!

Most of Paxton’s treasures are here on this bookshelf! He adores his books, his blocks and his farm!

Before we moved, I took a mirror that was in our yard sale pile and with a couple coats of spray paint completely made it over! The best part, we already had the spray paint so this was a free makeover!

While I was spray painting the mirror, I decided to paint the  knobs on the dresser red too! What a difference that made {and yes, a knob is missing! It’s actually tucked away in one of the drawers, we just haven’t put it back on!}

The I can do everythingart was part of a Day Spring review, The Cat in the Hat book was $1 at a thrift store and I purchased the ABC book for $5 as a birthday party decoration. The chair, which we love, was a Christmas gift from my grandparents. Paxton loves reading his books in his chair! {Or just hanging out chewing on a toy in his chair!}

I picked up these curtains at Goodwill several years ago for a mere $4! We used them in our first little apartment for a little while and they are perfect for Paxton’s room! I made the flag on the wall from a scrap piece of tin from my grandparents farm a few years back.

When we moved we needed a place to store toys. I didn’t want a traditional toy box since they are so big. We picked up an $18 galvanized tub for toys which goes right along with the farm touches in the room!

The most expensive part of the room was the rug. We wanted a 100% natural rug and were looking for a wool rug {which are expensive}. After a few months of searching, we still hadn’t found one we loved. We decided to go with a cow hide rug which is natural and incredibly soft! This was not a cheap purchase, we spent $150 on it but it’s a rug we love and will use for many years to come.

When we went to Ikea several months ago, I picked up 6 red frames for $12. I purchased them so I could finally display the farm animal wall art I had made before Paxton was born using old scrapbooking supplies. Often when I get Paxton out of his crib, he’ll point to the animals!

We were given a changing table before Paxton was born. It was a wood color and we painted it white so it would go with the rest of our nursery furniture! It cost around $20 for  paint and supplies. The ‘P’ was $5 at Hobby Lobby and painted with the same spray paint from the mirror and dresser knobs.

Paxton’s room is my favorite room in our home! I love that it is put together and that it is not too babyish and will be able to grow with him (and little brother one the way!)

Cost:

$25 Paint

$1 Cat in the Hat book

$5 ABC book

$18 Galvanized tub

$150 Cow Hide Rug

$12 Red Picture Frames

$20 Paint for Changing Table

$5 ‘P’

Total: $236*

And Paxton loves his nursery, especially reading in there!

{*$256 seems like a lot of money and it is! When you take out the $150 cost of the rug, the makeover was only $86! That’s quite frugal in my opinion! Plus, frugality to us is fewer quality items we love over cheapness!}

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Cloth Diapers: Introduction http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/09/08/cloth-diapers-introduction/ http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/09/08/cloth-diapers-introduction/#comments Thu, 08 Sep 2011 13:04:21 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=6983

An introduction to the different types of cloth diapers!

{Note: I am a Sweetbottoms Baby Affiliate}

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We’re welcoming a… http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/08/17/were-welcoming-a/ http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/08/17/were-welcoming-a/#comments Wed, 17 Aug 2011 23:47:08 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=6799

We found out last week that we have a healthy baby boy on the way! We’re thrilled to be welcoming our second son and that Paxton is going to have a close in age brother!

Here’s a picture of our son, Weston:

{To read more about Weston and my pregnancy, visit our family blog, The Simple Life of the Boreings!}

 

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Your Postpartum Body http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/08/17/your-postpartum-body/ http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/08/17/your-postpartum-body/#comments Wed, 17 Aug 2011 12:36:27 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=6789 “At six weeks postpartum, your body is almost back to normal, you’re feeling great, and you can resume being intimate with your husband.”

Before giving birth, I believed this! I really thought 6 weeks was the magic number.

After giving birth to an 8 pound 8 ounce baby boy which resulted in a third degree tear, healing was slow! I remember waking up exactly one week after my son was born and I was hardly able to move and wanted to cry as I was getting out of bed. Thankfully, that was the worst of it and I started progressively getting better after that day but why didn’t anyone tell me that the pain would last over a week!

Continue reading at Amy’s Finer Things where I’m guest posting as part of her Why Didn’t Anyone Tell Me? series. 

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Feeding Baby on a Budget http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/08/09/feeding-baby-on-a-budget/ http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/08/09/feeding-baby-on-a-budget/#comments Tue, 09 Aug 2011 15:45:12 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=6760 When it comes to feeding babies, it can either be really expensive or almost free! Breastfeeding and making your own baby food are the best ways to feed your baby on a budget!

I was very blessed that we had no major nursing issues in the beginning. I exclusively breastfeed my son for the first 6 months and reached my goal of 1 year of breastfeeding! We never had to buy any formula, I don’t know how much we saved because I’ve never had to buy formula but I’m guessing we saved hundreds of dollars!

Of course breastfeeding is free but you do need some ‘supplies’ to help make breastfeeding easier.

Here are some of the essentials:

  • Breast Pads I used disposable nursing pads when I’d go out for the first 6 weeks until my milk regulated {using washable pads at home}. After that I switched to reusables which saved me a lot of money over 15 months of nursing. The best disposable nursing pads that I’ve used for the cost are AVENT Washable Nursing Pads, at $6.99 for 3 pair they are at a great price and they held up great using for over a year of nursing {in fact, I’m going to use the same ones for baby number 2!} Another great option are Bamboobies, they are more expensive than the Avent pads but are a great option! {I loved my Overnight Bamboobies!} {I recommend having at least 12-14 pair of regular pads and 3-4 pair of overnights, you could get by with fewer if you do laundry frequently!}
  • Nursing Cover I always felt more comfortable covering up around others while nursing simply because it made them feel more comfortable {and I had a very active little boy from about 2 months forward!} Most of the time I used a nursing coverthat went over my neck. I also used aden + anais swaddle blankets as nursing covers. If you’re going to spend the money on the aden + anais swaddles, you can skip the nursing cover and use these! I would frequently just tie them around my neck or tuck a corner into my shirt.
  • Breast Pump If you hope to nurse for awhile and plan on leaving your baby for any length of time {such as date night} a breast pump is necessary! I knew I would be breastfeeding most of the time so I purchased a simple manual pump. I went with the Medela Harmony Manual Pump which was around $30! I love this pump, it’s easy to carry with you {for a quick pumping session in the car when you’re on a date}, takes up little space and is so easy to use. It held up great with a year of use and I recommend this pump to mamas looking for an inexpensive pump!
  • Milk Storage Bags If you are going to be pumping with the intentions of freezing your milk, you need to invest in some milk storage bags. Having pumped milk stored in the freezer is great, we still have a shelf full of breast milk that my son is still enjoying!
Approximate costs:
$43.92 {200 milk storage bags}
Total: $161.32 {much less than buying formula!!}

Of course you have to factor in that you should be able to reuse your reusable breast pads for your second baby as well as your nursing cover and breast pump. And, I did not factor in nursing bras, they are essential in my opinion but you have to find what works best for you!

Once baby is ready for solids, the most economical option is making your own baby food. It’s super easy and will save you money!

A month or so before Paxton started on solids, I started stocking up my freezer with homemade baby foods. I pureed homemade applesauce, pearsauce, green beans and carrots and froze them in ice cube trays. I then transferred the cubes of food into large freezer bags and had a large stash of foods to begin introducing to him!

I also made some of his foods fresh such as sweet potatoes and peas that I would cook and the puree before serving him. As he got older, I’d just mash the vegetables we were eating for him.

He only ate maybe 10 jars of baby food. I got a few free with coupons and we were given a few jars. I don’t even want to think about how much we would have spent on baby food paying $.50 or so a jar for a few months!

I found the only things I needed to make baby food were a small food processor, ice cube trays and large freezer bags! That’s all cheap and almost everyone has those things on hand already!

Wholesome Baby Food is a great resource if you are interested in making your own baby food!

Feeding baby on a budget is possible! I plan to do the exact same thing with baby #2 but this time it will cost even less since I won’t have to invest in a breast pump, nursing pads or a nursing cover!

*This post contains affiliate links.

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15 Months of Breastfeeding http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/08/04/15-months-of-breastfeeding/ http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/08/04/15-months-of-breastfeeding/#comments Thu, 04 Aug 2011 15:26:29 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=6769

Paxton at 15 months, Mama at 16 weeks pregnant

Since it’s World Breastfeeding Week, I’m sharing our breastfeeding story!

When Paxton was born, I hoped and prayed that we would have a successful nursing relationship. Once we got the hang of it, I set a goal of exclusively breastfeeding him until 6 months! Once that goal was reached, I decided that the next goal was to breastfeed him to 1 year. On April 16 we reached that goal.

From there I knew we were going to continue nursing until he was ready to wean. Little did I know at that point that there was another little one on the way! When I found out I was pregnant, he was still nursing morning, early afternoon and before bedtime. I decided to wean him from his early afternoon nursing which wasn’t difficult.

The midwives I saw in our practice were all supportive of me continuing to nurse Paxton during the early stages of pregnancy even though I wasn’t gaining any weight. I was so thankful for their support and reassurance that our baby was fine!

When he turned 14 months old, we began substituting his morning feeding with a bottle. This was a little difficult because every morning for the past year I’d go get him, bring him back our bed, lie down and nurse him and we’d both usually drift back off! Weaning him from morning nursing meant I have an additional step of getting a bottle and taking a bottle isn’t nearly as comforting as nursing so he rarely will go back to sleep anymore!

Around this same time, due to pregnancy, I began experiencing nipple tenderness and breastfeeding was something I didn’t look to as a sweet time but instead as a slightly painful experience. Typically once he latched on good and had nursed for 2 minutes it got better but those first 2-3 minutes were uncomfortable. We skipped one or two nights of nursing, substituting with snuggles and a bottle and he seemed fine. Finally, on Saturday, July 16, after 15 straight months of nursing I nursed him for the very last time.

It was a bittersweet moment knowing that it was the last time he would nurse. I honestly wasn’t as sad as I thought I would be. I think that’s due to the discomfort I’d been experiencing recently and the fact that I have another baby on the way and was looking forward to a bit of a break!

I’m amazed that my body provided nourishment to him for 15 months. I look back and am so thankful for all of the times we had cuddling and the bonding experience breastfeeding truly is! Honestly, I miss breastfeeding now because for the past 2-3 months that was the only time that he’d stay still and cuddle with me! {I’m now learning to be content with quick hugs and frequent kisses instead of holding him in my arms.} I also miss him falling asleep in my arms and just holding him and cherishing those sweet moments of a sweet sleeping babe.

I am thankful that weaning was easy for both of us. For me, my supply was diminishing and I never experienced any engorgement! And Paxton hasn’t had any issues, he’ll occasionally grab my chest and sign ‘milk’ but he’s happy and satisfied with a bottle of milk, either mine or cows milk!

I wouldn’t change a single thing about the past 15 months. Right now I’m enjoying my 5 month breastfeeding break and looking forward to beginning another nursing relationship with our new little one!

Previous Breastfeeding Posts:

My Breastfeeding Experience (So Far)

Exclusively Breastfed for 6 Months

A Year of Breastfeeding

This is just my breastfeeding story. I wanted to write it out so I will remember as well as to encourage mamas that extended nursing can be done. I am not sharing this to judge any mama who doesn’t chose  to or can’t breastfeed beyond a few weeks or months. We all make decisions that we believe are the best for our children. I know both formula and breastfed babies and toddlers that are happy and healthy!

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Fighting Stains http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/06/29/fighting-stains/ http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/06/29/fighting-stains/#comments Wed, 29 Jun 2011 19:23:01 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=6503 We’ve been using Charlie’s Soap for a year now on our cloth diapers and love it. However, I’ve found that it’s perfect for fighting stains!

A few month’s ago when Paxton was learning to walk, he fell and busted his nose resulting in blood all over his white bodysuit (it is white, forgive the picture quality.) It just so happened it was the very first time he wore this new bodysuit and I did not want it to be permanently stained.

The solution: a soak in Charlie’s Soap!

I put about 1/4 teaspoon Charlie’s in a large bowl, filled with cold water and stirred until the Charlie’s Soap was melted and then placed the blood stained bodysuit in it to soak overnight.

The result:

Stain free! You cannot even tell blood was ever on this bodysuit.

That’s a victory to me!

When Paxton was exclusively breastfed and had blowouts while wearing disposables when we were out, Charlie’s Soap preventing poo stains!

Even if you don’t cloth diaper or don’t want to use Charlie’s Soap for your laundry, it might be worth getting to prevent stains (and save money since you won’t have ruined garmets.)

*And no, I was not paid to share about Charlie’s Soap with you! I just wanted to share this stain fighting tip!

This post contains affiliate links.

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Our Exciting News http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/06/20/our-exciting-news/ http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/06/20/our-exciting-news/#comments Mon, 20 Jun 2011 21:56:04 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=6671

That’s right!!

Paxton is going to be a big brother!!!

His baby brother or sister is due to arrive December 31st!

After a week of extreme tiredness and a bit of nausea I thought it was possible that I was pregnant. I took my first test on May 4 and we had a ‘faint’ positive! John David wasn’t fully convinced and neither was I! We decided to test again on May 7 and had another positive. I celebrated my second Mother’s Day as a mama to 2 (although the only people who knew were John David and me and we were in disbelief!!)

I had about 6 weeks of nausea and food aversions but have not been sick like I was with Paxton. With him, I was sick from week 6 to 12! I am now 12 weeks 2 days and am starting to feel normal (I finally meal planned this week!)

Being pregnant, dealing with nausea, tiredness and an extremely active toddler is one of the reasons posts have been few and far between here.

We’re thrilled to be adding to our family! We had an ultrasound last Thursday and our new baby looks healthy! We were surprised to see how much of a baby he/she looks like, we weren’t quite 8 weeks when we had our first ultrasound with Paxton and he looked like a little bean!

Now, the big decision ahead of us is do we want to find out the gender! Since Paxton was born, I said I want to wait until the birth to find out with our next one but now that we have one on the way I’m starting to think I want to know! John David wants to know! We will have the next ultrasound around week 18 or 20 which means we have only 6-8 weeks to decide if we want to find out!

If you want to follow along with weekly pregnancy updates, I’ll be sharing those on our family blog, The Simple Life of the Boreings!

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Frugal First Birthday Party http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/04/26/frugal-first-birthday-party/ http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/04/26/frugal-first-birthday-party/#comments Tue, 26 Apr 2011 13:30:15 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=6513

On the 16th, my baby turned one! We had a party for him with family on a fairly small budget.

The budget : $100! Now, I know some of you are thinking, that’s not a frugal birthday party at all! And, I do agree! However, when you have family visiting from 1.5 to 3.5 hours away, the least you can do is feed them- remember there is a difference between being frugal and being cheap! Feeding 20 people a decent meal, having dessert and decorations with a $100 budget, that takes a little creative frugality!

Cake:

I made a mini smash cash and cupcakes {using Silicone Baking Cups}. The cupcake stand is made of 2 wrapped boxes! {The 2-5 candles are for Paxton’s Papaw who turned 55-they share a birthday!}

Cost:

  • Funfetti Cake Mix: $2.16
  • Funfetti Frosting: $3.24
  • Candles: $2.80
  • Wrapping Paper: $1.06

Total: $9.26

Decorations:

We created a slideshow of our favorite pictures from Paxton’s first year {I only chose about 750!} This played throughout the course of the party. I saved a lot of money doing this instead of developing a bunch of pictures to display.

We used his blocks to add a personal touch and we developed a favorite birthday picture (using a gift card left from a baby shower!) and put it in a frame we already had. The most expensive decor item for the party is the Dr. Seuss ABC book which I bought for $7.85 (I looked for it used at several thrift/used book stores with no luck). The party “theme” was books and primary colors and this book tied it all together! Of course, we’ll enjoy the book for years and years to come!

I also displayed more of our favorite books! Using these to decorate with was free! I also printed 4×6’s of Paxton’s birthday pictures {using the shower gift card to pay!}

Food:

The cups and straws, we already had! {The cups had survived 4 moves so it was time to use them finally!} Tying a ribbon {from my scrapbook stash} really made the straws look adorable!

We also already had plates, napkins and forks! I spent $1.06 purchasing spoons {which weren’t even used since nobody ate any ice cream…could have saved that $1.06!!}

I used fabric from my fabric stash as a table cloth! The blue, green and red fabric was perfect! I made a mini birthday banner from my scrapbook stash and purchased 4 balloons (red, yellow, blue, green) for $5.29! {Paxton just loved the balloons!}

One of the best parts of the party, other than the adorable 1-year-old and family, Chick-fil-A nuggets! Yum!! We had Chick-fil-A nuggets and slaw, potato wedges, and fresh fruit!!

Food costs:

  • Nuggets: $54.06
  • Potato Wedges: $11.25
  • Fruit: $11.67

Total: $76.98

Total Costs:

  • Cake: $9.26
  • Decorations (book & balloons): $13.14
  • Food: $76.98

Total: $99.38

I was $.62 under budget!

Of course, if we just had cake and decorations, I would have only spent $22.40 on the party, which is a very frugal first birthday party!

Paxton had an absolute blast at his party surrounded by those who love him most! He especially enjoyed eating his cake, opening presentsspending time with grandparents and guests!

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A Year of Breastfeeding http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/04/25/a-year-of-breastfeeding/ http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/04/25/a-year-of-breastfeeding/#comments Mon, 25 Apr 2011 16:10:33 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=6551

A week ago Paxton turned one and we reached the goal of breastfeeding one year!

When he was born, I knew I wanted to breastfeed and hoped my body would allow me to exclusively breastfeed to 6 months. Once we reached that goal, I decided to keep going to a year. Now, we are a few days past a year and have no plans of quitting.

He nurses every morning and before bedtime. During the day, sometimes he nurses only twice, sometimes up to four times.

I believe breastfeeding has made him a confident baby. He is occasionally clingy but that’s normally when he doesn’t feel good or is tired. Typically he is friendly and loves spending time with other people. He’ll go to just about anybody and we make friends everywhere we go! Paxton’s waving, smiling or reaching out to people!

I know nursing a toddler is strange to some but I’ve been blessed with a supportive husband who believes this is best for our child and several friends who are pro-breastfeeding!

A few Breastfeeding Benefits:

  • A healthy baby. He’s not been very sick at all! He even had a fever when his daddy had the flu but we continued to nurse and he never got the flu and didn’t have to take antibiotics! He has had 1 stomach bug and breast milk was the only food he could keep down for a day which prevented dehydration and antibiotics! We’ve yet to have an earache!
  • Helps with teething. Nursing helps soothe him when he’s teething. I love that he is able to find comfort when he’s in pain.
  • It’s simple. I don’t have to worry about bottles or sippy cups to feed him.
  • It’s frugal. We haven’t bought a single can of formula and now that he can have cows milk, we’re saving money not having to purchase extra organic milk for him to drink.

I haven’t set any goals beyond this point. We are going to continue breastfeeding probably to 15 months and maybe to 18 months. I’m not going to initiate weaning any time soon but if he does initiate whether it is next week, next month, or in several months, we’ll wean.

Related Posts:

*I know many women struggle with breastfeeding whether it is horrible pain, a baby who won’t latch or lack of milk supply and these are things they just can’t control. I do not think mothers who formula feed their babies are inferior to those who breastfeed, we all love our babies and do what is best for them! I also know that breastfeeding to a year -and beyond- doesn’t work for many mamas! If you’ve nursed 2 weeks, 4 months, 11 months or even to age 2, congrats!

**Be sure to enter the Bamboobies Nursing Pads giveaway going on through Wednesday, April 26th!

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Happy Birthday Paxton! http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/04/16/happy-birthday-paxton/ http://frugalandsimple.com/2011/04/16/happy-birthday-paxton/#comments Sat, 16 Apr 2011 17:34:16 +0000 http://frugalandsimple.com/?p=6485

Happy First Birthday to Paxton Graham!

It seems like only yesterday I gave birth to him and I remember that wonderful day so vividly! On the other hand, it seems like we’ve had him forever and we can hardly remember our life without this precious little boy!

{And we pulled off a very frugal birthday party! I plan to share about it soon!}

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